Is there a difference between a bit, a little bit and a little in the following context?

Is there a difference between a bit, a little bit and a little in the following context?

He is a little bit angry.
He is a little angry.
He is a bit angry.

Or do these sentences mean the same thing?


1 –

There is no difference in meaning between these three sentences, unless the speaker already establishes a context.

He’s a bit angry

This means he is somewhat angry.

He’s a little bit angry

This means he is somewhat angry. No native speakers would infer any qualitative difference in how angry he is, unless someone first said

John: He’s a bit angry (meaning fairly angry)

Mary: No, he’s only a little bit angry (meaning not as angry as John implied)

When used alone, “little”, “bit”, and “little bit” all mean “small”. But if you emphasize “little bit” over “little” or “bit” then you are emphasizing how small it is.

If I walked up to you on Monday and said “I’m a bit hungry”, and on Tuesday I walked up to you and said “I’m a little bit hungry”, there is no way decide that I’m not as hungry Tuesday as I was Monday. But if on Wednesday I said “I’m a bit hungry”, and you said “Have a hamburger”, I could clarify that I’m not as hungry as you think, by saying “I’m only a little bit hungry”.

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